Every year brings its own unique combination of opportunities and challenges. While 2020 certainly presented some serious and unexpected obstacles for businesses all around the world, it also forced us to confront and overcome despite difficult circumstances. The team at Drilling Innovative Solutions did see some temporary setbacks due to the pandemic, but we also had more than enough victories to comfortably call 2020 a success.

Regardless of the adaptations that our team made along the way, one theme remained consistent: our commitment to our company’s mission and the clients we serve. By staying true to these values—we were able to expand our clientele across domestic and international waters, increase revenue and minimize layoffs due to COVID-19.

Long-Distance Logistics During Lockdown

Since many of our clients operate in the Gulf of Mexico, we are often faced with the challenge of managing long-distance logistical concerns working with companies based in various countries around the region. Overcoming language, cultural and legal barriers requires research, finesse and commitment—particularly with all the extra strain on international travel and commerce due to COVID-19.

We opened negotiations with a prominent oil and gas company in Neuquén, Argentina facilitated through our relationship with a Texas-based directional drilling company during the first few months of 2020. Despite a wave of new, stringent customs requirements that were put in place, we were able to deliver the requested tools before the end of the year. Our team learned a lot about navigating the sales and contract process with a South American business, which will help us streamline and stabilize similar operations in the future.

This project wasn’t just a test for our logistical and negotiating abilities—it also gave our Sentinel Drilling Safety Float Valves a chance to prove themselves under pressure with new major oil and gas partnerships at stake. Our tools allowed the operator to complete the drilling of the hole without any service interruptions, of which they were experiencing at an uncomfortable rate with the other tools they were utilizing at the time. It was a win-win. They now had the reliability of consistent seals after prolonged use without having to deal with unnecessary pauses in their operations.

Integration Without Interruption

One of the top reasons why Gulf of Mexico operators use our safety float valves and drilling tools  is to avoid costly downtime. Interruptions in the production process aren’t good for anyone. That’s why we always strive to minimize or eliminate downtime when designing and delivering our solutions.

Integrating our devices and equipment without significant operational halts was the highlight of several major projects in 2020. One of these projects involved two deepwater rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Original negotiations started for one rig, but the client was so satisfied with the results that they requested an order for a second rig before the first project was even completed.

Managing Under Extreme Conditions

Oil and gas extraction is a high-pressure industry in more ways than one. Not only is there a significant investment of finances and manpower, but the work can also be hazardous for personnel and demanding on physical equipment. Drilling tools and components that falter under pressure can ruin timetables, present significant safety risks and cost a lot of money in the long-term.

Contractors and crews need to be able to rely on their equipment and tools without question. With this in mind, we are excited to share the success one of our clients had with our Sentinel Liner Running Safety Valve during a Managed Pressure Drilling operation in the Gulf. Our tools allowed this client to overcome previous obstacles and successfully set liners in two different hole sections—a task that they were not able to accomplish without the unique benefits that our Sentinel LRs have to offer. Additionally, it provided our client the utmost protection against unexpected well control events.

Virtual Consultation for Design and Deployment

Ensuring our drilling tools meet and exceed operational expectations is a DIS standard, but conducting all of our consultation virtually was a challenge we had to adapt to in 2020. Like companies in almost every other industry, we had to learn how to conduct many of our essential tasks through remote conferencing and long-distance communication. All in which, was to avoid unnecessary personal contact in adherence to pandemic lockdown regulations.

While this did create an initial strain on our team, adapting to this challenge has prepared us to overcome similar circumstances in the future. Since many of our clients operate in different regions or in remote locations, it’s important for us to be comfortable conducting detailed design and deployment consultations digitally. This experience has also given us the chance to adopt a more flexible system of internal communication and collaboration.

Looking Forward to 2021

We faced new challenges, overcame major obstacles and learned many important lessons in 2020. Now that the year is over, the team at DIS is looking forward to the opportunity to apply all of our hard-earned knowledge to the projects we work on in the years to come. As these highlights from the past year show, our commitment to clients and desire for excellence in drilling tools are still the fundamental values that drive our company into the future.

To discuss a tailored drilling tool solution that exceeds your expectations, contact the engineers at DIS today!

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